When we see someone struggling, our natural response is to try to help them. There is no moment more true to that than when we see someone we know or love facing an unplanned pregnancy. Whether it is your friend, sister, daughter, coworker, granddaughter or girlfriend, the first response is to offer them advice. The problem is, often they are inundated with several “helpers” who want to offer their advice, all with differing opinions. It’s very difficult to be struggling with a decision and have people all around you giving conflicting advice but not really providing any resources to follow through with that advice. “You’d be a great mom, I’ll help you!” while someone else says, “but what about college, you’ll never be able to go,” to “whatever you do, don’t just ‘give it up.’” The best advice you can truly give them is to refer them to an LSS Pregnancy Counselor, because everyone around them might have an opinion on what they should do, but a Pregnancy Counselor helps THEM decide what THEY should do.
Often those friends who say they’ll help end up disappearing when the time comes. Many single parents have made it through college and became successful all while parenting. And NO ONE who has ever made an adoption plan ever just “gave it up.” (*see blog about the Weight of Words in Adoption https://lsssdblog.wordpress.com/2013/09/26/the-weight-of-words/).
But it’s not just about adoption. Pregnancy Counselors provide clients with a decision-making packet. They explore every option. They look at a budget for parenting, explore community resources, and even talk about what will happen at the hospital and how that will be paid for. If clients decide to parent, Pregnancy Counselors assist with making a parenting plan to be the most successful parents they can be. If parenting just isn’t in the cards for them, then they explore adoption – how it works, what they want it to look like, who they want to choose as parents, and what their expectations of the future will look like and how to develop that relationship. The goal is for the client to feel good about their plan, whatever that plan may be. And the best part about a Pregnancy Counselor is that their help is FREE! There is no sliding fee scale. There is no cost if they chose to parent. There is no cost at all.
So the next time you hear of someone facing an unplanned pregnancy, whether it is your cousin’s daughter’s boyfriend’s sister’s half-sister, once removed, or even you yourself, don’t tell them you have an old college roommate who has a cousin who has a sister who has a friend who wants to adopt – tell them to call an LSS Pregnancy Counselor!
LSS provides Pregnancy Counseling Services statewide. For more information on Pregnancy Counseling or to refer someone, please contact one of our Pregnancy Counselors:
East River: Diane Pillar – 605-221-2413 or West River: Shirley Conrad – 605-390-4016